Amerika

“Cordycepted”

Perhaps the best slang term ever, and one that will take over from the now-ubiquitous “cuck.” The new term refers to the tendency of a certain fungus to make ants into zombies, doing its will, much as the viral meme of egalitarianism does to human brains, entering them through areas of low self-confidence:

Fungi of the genus Ophiocordyceps — so-called zombie ant fungi — need ants to complete their life cycle. When an ant comes across fungal spores while foraging, the fungus infects the insect and quickly spreads throughout its body.

Fungal cells in the ant’s head release chemicals that hijack the insect’s central nervous system. The fungus forces the ant to climb up vegetation and clamp down onto a leaf or twig before killing its hapless drone. It then grows a spore-releasing stalk out of the back of the victim’s head to infect more ants on the ground below.

…The team was able to identify two compounds, guanidinobutyric acid (GBA) and sphingosine, that are likely involved in zombifying its two hosts — these two compounds also appear to play a role in some neurological disorders, the researchers note.

This is not the first time that humans have found themselves concerned about the zombifying or mind controlling possibilities of parasitic fungal agents other than Democrats:

Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease that is most commonly transmitted through the feces of infected cats. People can contract it from handling cat litter. It can also be found in undercooked meat or contaminated water. The parasite that causes it, toxoplasma gondii, is carried by nearly 30 percent of all humans and in most cases is considered relatively harmless. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates more than 60 million people in the U.S. may have it.

However, in some people, the researchers found a link between the parasite and Intermittent Explosive Disorder (IED), a psychiatric disorder characterized by recurrent, impulsive, problematic outbursts of verbal or physical aggression that are disproportionate to the situations that trigger them.

In a future age, perhaps we will heed the warning of William S. Burroughs, who famously said that “language is a virus,” following up on a warning from Fred Nietzsche about the dangers of socially-transmitted tokens.

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